I am the type of person who enjoys being outdoors….taking a walk, reading a book, writing a blog post…any time outside is rejuvenating. I do know, however, that it needs to be the kind of outside where I can enjoy nature. I really loved living right outside of DC for many reasons, but I don’t miss all of the buildings and the smell of car exhaust. I love the outdoors so much that I know that when I get extra crabby during the winter it is often because I haven’t been outside enough. One of my favorite parts about Macomb, Illinois, are the stars at night. I love taking a walk at night, especially during the winter when it is crisp and cold, and seeing all of the stars. It is something that just can’t be replicated in a city, and the calmness of the air helps me to put a lot of experiences in perspective. (If you ever make it to Macomb, IL, in the winter, I highly recommend taking a winter night walk :).)
I remember living in Maryland, and sharing with some of the folks there that I was going to spend my vacation in Northern Minnesota. The response I received was confusion. Why in the world would I go on vacation to Minnesota, and even more why would I go to Northern Minnesota? I suppose if I hadn’t moved around so much throughout my life, I might not understand their questions, but I do know that most people tend to explore the same places. In fact, I suppose that is part of the reason why I enjoy spending time on Lake Vermilion.
One of my favorite activities to do at Lake Vermilion actually doesn’t actually involve getting in the lake. Rather, I enjoy taking walks on the road that goes right along the lake. It is about a 6 mile hike (round trip) from the cabin I stay in to the end of the road.
And, I kid you not, it is uphill both ways. My mom and I joke about how it is a great butt workout.
Occasionally, I will get it in my mind that I can run the distance, but I pretty much think I hike the hills no matter what, and really just run in between (I probably should also change the word run to jog :)). Oh, and there are beautiful lake side views to enjoy:
As well as humorous mailboxes:
Besides the fresh air, I love looking at the forest and all of the wild flowers that grow under the trees. Some of my favorites are:
Unfortunately, I’m not sure what any of them are called. I do know that if I was up here in later July or August, I would also find wild blueberries and raspberries. I was often told as a little girl to go pick wild berries when I said I was bored and/or there was nothing to do.
From time to time on my walks, I am also reminded that the forest is the permanent home of quite a few animals. So far this summer I’ve seen:
I know that how I find calmness might not be the same as everyone else, and that is cool…Lake Vermilion walks wouldn’t be the same if they did. 🙂